• Students go purple for worthy cause

Students go purple for worthy cause

Karamu High School students collectively walked more than the length of New Zealand in a 12-hour Relay For Life, aimed at raising much-needed funds, and awareness of cancer. 

The event on Friday was organised by the school’s Year 13 Community Leaders in lieu of the annual Hawke’s Bay event, which was cancelled due to Cyclone Gabrielle.

Community Leaders Grace Sayer, Cole Potts-Tyro and Abel Barrett said the day was everything they had hoped for, and more, with students, teachers, whānau, and the wider community coming together.

The day began at 7am and ended at 7pm, with a Remembrance Lap in the morning and a moment of silence in the evening.

Grace said it was important to “bring it back to the reason why we were having the event”.

“People do want to do something to show they care, and this was a way for us all to get involved without having to donate a lot of money individually, but still contribute in a big way.”

Karamu High School Community Leaders Grace Sayer (left), Abel Barrett and Cole Potts-Tyro, with Deputy Head Student Esta Chaplin (middle). Photo/Supplied.

They set up a 400m lap on the school field. Throughout the day, each class completed a lap together, before passing the baton to the next class.

“We also had Free Dress Day, with students encouraged to wear purple and bring a gold coin donation, and a Sausage Sizzle at lunch and after school, with a portion of which also donated.”

Mr Whippy also made an appearance, and a staff bake sale and raffle contributed to the total tally.

In total, they walked 4,456 laps or 1782.8km - more than the 1600km length of NZ. They also raised several thousand dollars, all of which will be donated to the Cancer Society Hawke’s Bay.

Deputy Head Student Esta Chaplin said: “The day was a good reminder for all of us students that with a heap of teamwork, we can achieve a really successful outcome”.

Relay For Life is one of the Cancer Society's biggest fundraising events and helps fund much-needed services for cancer patients and their whānau.

Y12 and 13 Kaiārahi Tom Willis, supported the leaders in their cause and said it was amazing to see student-led initiative come to life.

“Cancer has affected pretty much everyone in some way or another, so it is great for the school to be involved and support a worthy cause.”